Friday, Oct. 5, 2012 | 2 a.m.
The presidential debate Wednesday night had a segment on the role of government.
Government employees are absolutely necessary and they do a lot of good. But let’s start with simple, undisputable arithmetic. Government employees usually pay taxes. And some people on welfare or food stamps pay some taxes. But nobody is in a tax bracket greater than 100 percent; therefore, each government employee or recipient is a net drain on government spending. They take out more than they put in.
Also, essentially no government employee creates anything that we can sell overseas. The government employee has produced nothing that can be sold to China to offset a purchase from that country. Hence, the balance of trade must be made up by someone in the private sector making something that can be sold outside of America.
Again, government employees are necessary and good. But how many can we afford? Currently, we are the largest debtor in the history of the world. That cannot continue; our credit rating will go down, our dollar’s value will fall and inflation will soar.
We must balance how much government we want with what we can afford. And right now, that balance is out of whack and getting worse.